And we think they don’t understand what we say…

Our son’s favorite books these days are anything written by Dr. Zeuss and a collection of wonderful French books compiled by Henriette major. They each come with a CD, but he’s quite happy to just look at the amazing illustrations while I sing the songs that I know. So Saturday we are doing just that and he is all cozy on my lap when all of a sudden, he starts bawling! My first reflex is to make sure I’m not crushing his foot by mistake or anything like that, but no, he seems fine. I cuddle with him for a sec and he stops crying, so I turn the page, move on to the next song, and forget about it.

Sunday, I’m reading the same book when all of a sudden, out of nowhere again, he breaks up in tears! I realize it’s at the exact same point of the same song, “Ah! Vous dirais-je maman”. It’s a made-up verse that goes like that (with a quick translation for those who need it):

Ah! Vous dirais-je maman (Oh, mommy, let me tell you)
Ce qui cause mon tourment (What makes me really upset)
Papa veut que j’aille au lit (Daddy wants me to go to bed)
Quand ce n’est même pas la nuit (When it’s not even night time)

So I comfort him, decide to never sing this song again, and move on. But Monday, our boy starts bawling as I’m reading a different song, earlier in the same book (which is all about lullabies). It’s “Cola mon p’tit frère”, which goes roughly like this: “Go to sleep, my little brother, go to sleep and we’ll give you milk”.

So now any song about bed time is off limits, I guess! And there I thought he didn’t really follow what I say when I read a story!

The funniest thing is, when I actually tell him it’s time to go to bed, he doesn’t start crying! Sometimes he says no, but most often than not he’s happy to run upstairs, as our bedtime routine includes a wrestling session with daddy and hiding under the covers on our bed, all of which he loves. And even when it’s really time to brush his teeth and get ready, he does run away from me, but only for the pleasure of being chased. He doesn’t actually mind going to bed. He falls asleep on his own and never cries anymore. And I have never, ever read either of these stories at bed time or before putting him down for a nap.

Some mysteries may never be solved…

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